Galway Hurdle Preview - 4.45 (ATR)
If the forecast proves correct, a decent dollop of rain should ensure that the Ballybrit track rides quite testing on the National Hunt course, and with that in mind, TIGRIS RIVER (best price 11-1) jumps off the page as being one of the few who will benefit greatly from the likely change in going.
A smooth C&D winner at last year’s festival when trained by Aidan O’Brien, the son of Montjeu went on to run several decent races in defeat, most notably when a creditable fourth of the 28-strong field in the big 2m handicap hurdle at Leopardstown in the middle of winter. As expected, the form of that race worked out a treat in the ensuing months with the likes of Ivan Grozny, Bamako Moriviere and Ancient Sands all going on to land big pots subsequently, so if the selection can run to a similar level here tomorrow, he must have a fair chance at the weights. Off the track for six-months since that day, he had a nice prep-run for today’s prize when a not knocked about fourth in a competitive heat at Bellewstown last time and, with that run sure to have brought him on a good deal, he should now be at fever-pitch for the big day.On top of the list of positives is the form of his stable so far this week, with two winners from four runners, so it’s pretty clear that young Joseph has an appetite for these big meetings in the early part of his new career. All in all, the four-year-old is proven around the track, will appreciate the ground and if the first-time pieces can bring about just a little more improvement, there’s every chance he can provide the newest recruit to the Ballydoyle training ranks with another notable prize to his CV.